Posts Tagged ‘“show me the money”’

It all began with “The Passion of the Christ,” I suppose. And thank God it did.

Then, from the ashes of cutting floors everywhere sprouted wonderful films “Facing the Giants” and “Fireproof” that did something most Christian movies didn’t – made Hollywood stand up and take notice.

Typically, and unfortunately, the term is “Christian movie” and not “movies that are Christian”. There is a difference because perception is reality and people determine that reality with their movie ticket. (Tell that to the makers of “The Omega Code“… woof!)

The Potter's House in Dallas, Bishop T. D. Jakes

If Jakes can fill this house weekly, a box office is far from unlikely

And now, comes the prolific Bishop T.D. Jakes – from preaching to writing to screenplays. Now, his movies are giving Hollywood pause, as seen in a recent article from the Christian Post:

Bishop T.D. Jakes is attempting to change the “Hollywood machine” – what has at times been considered a “tool of the devil” by Christians – into a platform to potentially reach millions of unchurched with Christian messages.

Jakes just completed shooting of his third film, “Jumping the Broom” described as “an upcoming faith and family movie that follows the clashing of two families from different backgrounds during a weekend wedding.”

Pastor of the more than 30,000-member church The Potter’s House, Jakes told The Christian Post that he was drawn to this film when he looked at the script and saw the many ways it speaks about bringing together people from different backgrounds.

The story about a husband and a wife from fictional Taylor and Watson families with divergent socioeconomic backgrounds is also a step – in the bishop’s mind – to de-alienate Christians from Hollywood. It’s a chance for Christians to get their message out through Hollywood’s “megaphone.”

Mel Gibson. Kirk Cameron. And Bishop T.D. Jakes?!

There’s a troika you wouldn’t expect, but it seems they have done the unthinkable – given Hollywood a little faith.

As a megachurch pastor, however, Jakes is looking for that “sweet spot” where he can find harmony between Hollywood’s definition of entertainment – where blood, gore and sex often overrule moral concern – and Christian, family values. “We are trying to find balance. I find that people, as a rule, don’t go to see films that are overtly medicinal. They really want to be entertained, so we are trying to find our sweet spot between entertainment and humor and message.”

A school of Christian fish. Classy.

WARNING: Certainly a bad driver

This is something so close to who I am in that an ichthus needs to stand for something more than shady business people, dolts looking for short cuts and manners that would Emily Post dog cuss your mama. Say what you will about the man, but his methods to bring awareness and glory for God is working.

“Christian movies” are largely considered to be cheap, poorly written, terribly acted and carries those three familiar words that most Christ followers have become accustomed, “Straight to DVD.”

Apparently, that’s the not the case any more. “Jumping the Broom” (which is slated for a Mother’s Day 2011 release) has an all-star cast featuring the incomparable Angela Bassett… and uh, a bunch of other folks whose name I don’t remember. (I’m so partial. Sue me.) Certainly, the script has dynamic possibilities. More importantly, there’s a cryptic message to be learned as well.

The term “Jumping the Broom” comes from slave wedding ceremonies that would offer both the husband and wife a chance for “Decision Making honors” in the home with a test of jumping height. Whoever wins, wins.

Such is life for what Bishop Jakes is trying to accomplish – let’s see if a “Christian movie” can jump high enough to capture box office supremacy for at least a week. It will create a buzz in Hollywood and could make the elite question what they do and how they do it.

Oh sure, the blood-gore-sex recipe will never fade, but possibly productions with a purpose can still make a profit. And let’s be honest, in that town, that’s the Gospel truth. Preach on, brother. Preach on.

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I know. I know. I never thought the economy would get so bad that this headline would ever be necessary. I always Jesus rocked the finest of tunics and got his hair groomed by celebrity stylists but it’s true according CNN’s Belief Blog:

George Horn allegedly broke into the St. John the Baptist Catholic Church on the night of June 26. Fort Lauderdale police say the 48-year-old suspect broke a window to enter the church, took a crucifix from the church’s altar and then used it to pry open a donation box.

What kind of sick and deranged fool do you have to be to use a crucifix to steal… from a church! Let’s find out:

That's a theft in progress. And yes, that's a crucifix in his hands.

Courtesy: Fort Lauderdale PD

There’s a theft in progress. That’s candid camera. And yes, that’s the Son of God in his clammy hands.

This guy is jonesin’ to go to hell. He has to be. Why else would you take that as your “Crowbar of record”?! Sure, this guy must have been a crackhead, but I can stumble across a homeless man, say the name of Jesus and get a civil response.

Not Rosemary’s Baby here. Oh no. He’s got life all figured out.

According to WPLC 10 in Fort Lauderdale, the guy was prying his way into a losing situation (Thanks, I’m here all week):

“It’s almost an act of desperation,” the Rev. James Daly, a visiting priest, told Local 10’s Janine Stanwood… Daly said the man first went for the two donation boxes located at each end of the church. Daly said people leave what they can in those boxes for the poor. They are locked and not always checked on a regular basis.

Daly said the burglar then walked toward a prayer area where candles are lined above.”Then he came up here where the bigger money would be. But there’s no bigger money because there’s nobody here in the summertime,” he said.

Here’s the ironic thing of the whole CSI case: The suspect, who was caught on surveillance video, cut himself at some point, leaving a large amount of blood behind, police said.

Anyone see the divine sense of humor in that?

Megachurches are no longer “Mega” these days. Unless, of course, you consider the megalomaniacs building these ornate and appalling edifices.

Sure, some of them are huge because they have to be – see Willow Creek, The Potter’s House or Second Baptist Church for example. Huge congregations demand a huge facility.

They do not demand statues that get struck down but mythological figureheads. Nor do they have to feature life-size cherubs bedazzled and blinged out greeting you lowly sinners at the door. However, I truly thought I had seen it all. That is until I was reading the New York Times a couple of weeks ago and saw something from Sao Paulo, Brazil that would make that big Jesus statue hide his head in shame.

Meet a group of saints that think it’s a snazzy idea to rebuild Solomon’s Temple for $200 million (and carry 10,000 seats). Yes, that Solomon’s Temple!

According to a post on the blog of Bishop Edir Macedo, the founder of Brazil’s evangelical Universal Church of the Kingdom of God, which is building the replica, the structure will be 180 feet high, making it nearly twice as tall as the Christ the Redeemer statue that towers over Rio de Janeiro. Mr. Macedo also said that stones of the same type used by Solomon had been ordered from Jerusalem to be used in a complex which will also house 36 Bible schools, television and radio studios and a 1,000-space parking lot.

Just when you think it can’t get any worse, the Church comes through in splendid fashion. Keep it classy, folks.

Are you kidding me?! What purpose does this serve? Moreover, how does this honor God. Solomon built that amazing structure because he had something amazing to put in the Holy of Holies. Oh yeah, and he could.

What do you have, you narcissistic, over-compensating twit? Other than an obvious little-man complex.

And whose high-tone behind are you planning to park in seats of gold. Better yet, marble toilets? I realize Solomon probably peed in a trough, but this is the 21st century, baby. You got to represent, right? While you are at it, make sure you throw in one of “order while you watch” areas like the big stadia has. I mean, if your followers are going to watch a game, they may as well be entertained with dollar hot-dog Sundays and Salty Pretzel Wednesdays.

Here’s more lovely pictures, in case you enjoy the taste of throw up in your mouth.

BREAKING NEWS 07/27: Benny and Paula respond via website to this story.

BREAKING NEWS 08/15: Benny Hinn admits to an elicit “friendship”?! Enjoy.

Once upon a time, there were two well-known preachers found anywhere on Christian TV.

The first, a rococo guy from out of town who had a flair for the garish and flamboyant in terms of preaching and healing. The second, a confused, opprobrious white girl twice-removed from a trailer park who perfected a panache for ministering to those she considered ‘like-minded’.

Both were married and enjoying making a living on the backs of Christians in need. Life was good. A lot of television. A skosh of megalomania. And egos the size of Solomon’s Temple.

They couldn’t be touched… until their reality check bounced and both were divorced.

He was stunned that this woman that he had grown to adore and tolerate would ever leave him and his Nehru suits. He was internationally regaled, the TBN poster boy and was constantly in the headlines thanks to swindling the IRS out of its cash. What’s not to love?

In fact, he was so perturbed that his betrothed of 30 years would hit the bricks that he made a public plea for understanding, which is so unlike him anyway.

Her story is a little different in that while she was plying her craft to women with “weaves, government cheese and jheri curls” (three words you can hear in any message she delivers), her Camelot was crumbling as the church was very much in debt, her son was following in mom’s footsteps offending intelligent black folk and her husband just didn’t get her act anymore.

Then, word comes out that she is gallivanting around the chitlin’ circuit with a man who truly understands her – Rick Hawkins.  This self-appointed ‘Bishop’ from San Antonio, Texas whoops and hollers just like her and just to a crowd that they are so not like.

They get each other. They find rest in each other. They dig each other… until … (the video is great):

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Both preachers were wandering on TBN and Daystar aimlessly in need of a connection. Not the one they daftly exploit with Jesus Christ. No, I mean one of a worldly sense.

And now, reports are they found one… in each other’s arms. Yeech!

Thanks to the (are you ready) the National Enquirer, we find Benny Hinn and Paula White are rumored to be dating! What the what?!

Benny Hinn and Paula White having a love affair?

(Courtesy: National Enquirer)

Hurting. Jaded. And alone. These two dolts find a way to seek God while traipsing off to Rome and playing ‘laying on of hands ministry’?! Seriously? So says the gossip rag:

In a shocking revelation sure to rock millions in the Christian community Hinn,57, recently sneaked off to a romantic Roman holiday in the Eternal City – with another beautiful blonde evangelist!

Well, tap the brakes on the “beautiful” but I get the point.

It’s a proven fact that people in similar industries discover love only there. Be it police officers, lawyers or media types, the intermingling there goes well beyond the water cooler. And now, add to the mix fraudulent preachers?

Let’s keep it classy, gang. America is watching okay?

Now before you go off and tell your pastor of the smut I am extolling, I understand this is the same publication that prides itself on pictures of celeb bumps and stretch marks. However, it is also the sleazy publication that broke a few things you may regard as “news”.

The National Enquirer discovered that Rev. Jesse Jackson had an illegitimate child, that Rush Limbaugh had a painkiller addiction, and most recently that Tiger Woods was having an affair or two. And oh yeah, John Edwards and his love child? Yeah, they broke that too.

So, spare your world the drama of “Oooooo, God’s gonna get him” and stop to consider what if this is legitimate?

Is it so difficult to imagine that two ignominious messengers of God would feel that they are like a castoff from Survivor, banished from the island of all things televangelical, and have no one to preach at that would understand?

Surely, they would call each other and discuss how they are both being investigated for IRS fraud by the government and both have been dumped by their spouse. There’s a common bond there, no?

One thing leads to another and Paula places her “life coaching” on hold to fly around the world with Benny and his sexy coifed hairdo. She needs his attention being twice-scorned herself (and still recuperating from Pastor Handsy noted in the aforementioned video). Benny is an agape wound and Paula’s presence is the Hello Kitty band-aid he so desperately needs.

I’m getting misty just thinking about it.

And before you cast this off without a respected source, The Toronto Star is covering it as well.

Neither Hinn nor White could be reached for comment Friday.

That’s an attempt to uncover a source. As Another Brick on the Wall, Get Religion notes: “There’s a big difference in most people’s minds over ‘reports suggest’ and ‘the National Enquirer reports.'”

Yes, there is. So as many of my beloved colleaguessuggest” better than most, I’ll keep watching the Enquirer’s report until a more respected source follows suit.

Odds are they will be reporting to Benny and Paula “This Ain’t Your Day” again.

Stealing an offering; Receiving a beating

Perhaps they would not have been caught if they saw CSI?

Just when you thought we were all done with Easter stories and could go back to a shameful televangelist, an abusive priest or even someone actually living for God and for real, we come across two dimwitted broads who evidently didn’t get enough from the Easter Bunny and decided to hop in to holiday yore with their latest stunt.

According to the Sacramento Bee, two women took advantage of being “just a visitor” at the Church of the Nazarene on Arden Way and decided to make their way out the door of the church office with “between $10,000 and $25,000 in cash and checks” before anyone could verify who they were. Classy.

The women – described as African Americans in their 20s – left in a faded black ’80s sedan, Jones said. One was wearing a purple shirt, the other a black shirt, Jones said. No arrests have been made. Church members who made an offering with a check during the early service have been advised to stop payment.

Yes, please stop payment unless you would like your Easter offering to go Ray’s Pawn Shop on the south side for some cheap fur coat, a used Nintendo DS and possibly a pack of Lucky Strikes.

How fast do you have to want to get to hell when you steal from a church on Easter Sunday? I’m sure these women weren’t after money for the rent – they staked the joint and got sticky fingered when no one was looking.

Perhaps the synopsis of this dastardly deed was best summarized by “longtime parishioner and former state Assemblyman Larry Bowler,” whose subjective point of view should be a DVD extra on “Cops” or something:

To steal from anyone is an outrage. To steal from a church is a double outrage and to steal from a church on Easter Sunday – that is beyond outrage,” Bowler said.